Turkey-Syria earthquake kills thousands

On Monday morning, members of the White Helmets search the rubble for survivors in the countryside of Syria’s northwestern province of Idlib. (Abdulaziz Ketaz/AFP/Getty Images)

Hundreds of families remain trapped under the rubble of collapsed buildings in northwestern Syria after Monday’s powerful earthquake, according to the White Helmets, officially known as the Syrian Civil Defence.

More than 790 casualties have been confirmed dead in rebel-held areas of northwestern Syria and more than 2,200 injured, the White Helmets said on Twitter.

However, “the numbers are expected to rise significantly as hundreds of families are still under the rubble,” the group said.

More than 210 buildings were destroyed by the quake in northwestern Syria, the group added.

A bit of context: Syria, a country already suffering from the effects of civil war, is facing widespread devastation following the earthquake. More than 1,500 dead and 3,600 injured have been reported across the country, officials said.

Some 4 million people in northern Syria have already been displaced and are dependent on humanitarian aid due to the war, a UNICEF spokesperson said earlier. Among the main concerns now are the lack of access to shelter and clean water in freezing weather conditions and the risk of spreading diseases such as cholera.


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